Meet the Maker: Journeyman Distillery

Road trip! Join us for a jaunt down 94 to meet the fine folks at Journeyman Distillery in Three Oaks, Michigan –

While they’ve grown tremendously since they first opened their doors in 2011 as a small distillery + tasting room, their dedication to quality and excitement for The Adventure of Spirits has never wavered, and it shines through every drop.

Pour yourself a drink and grab a seat in our conversation with production manager Tom Balich – we learn what makes Journeyman different, the care and quality of their ingredients, their handmade process and more.

…and about that drink – shop our Journeyman Featherbone Bourbon, Foxtrot Single Barrel Selection here!


Holiday Party Punches

With all that party-hopping (and if you’re hosting, prepping), quick, easy cocktails are a must. So we grabbed our punch bowls and spent an afternoon at the bar with our beverage director to whip up three boozy concoctions you can easily batch and serve at the rest of your holiday gatherings!

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Eggnog Old Fashioned

Serves 8-10

  • 1 1/2 cups (12 oz) George Dickel No. 12
  • 1 bottle Califia Farms Almond Milk – Holiday Nog
  • 4 dashes Jack Rudy Bitters

Now that’s a good egg(nog). Because you’re probably enjoying this alongside some pretty heavy apps and sweets, we swapped in an almond milk nog for a lighter take on the traditional spiked eggnog – but if you’re about the moo and want something a bit richer, just swap it out for this bottle.

Combine all ingredients in a pitcher or punch bowl and stir gently until incorporated. Ladle into cups over ice and top off with a dusting of ground cinnamon.

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Grinch Juice

Serves 12-14

  • 1 bottle Gruet, Brut
  • 2 cups Ketel One
  • 2 bottles Natalie’s Juices – Lemonade
  • 1 cup Matchabar – Original Matcha (SHAKE WELL!)

Our kind of green juice. These clean and approachable flavors make the perfect light libation – and with those bubbles, we’re making a mental note to add this to our spring brunch rotation, too.

Combine all ingredients in a punch bowl over ice (highly recommend these classic Chicago cubes for best results). Stir occasionally to keep the matcha from settling. Making this for a party? Be sure to mix this right before guests arrive to keep the brut bubbles alive.

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Mulled Red Wine

Serves 8-10

  • 1 bottle The Whole Shebang! Red Blend
  • 1 bottle Mini Few Bourbon
  • 2 cups Red Jacket Orchards Cider
  • 1 bottle Bittermilk – Old Fashioned
  • 5 tbsp Honey

First rule of mulled wine drinks: it’s important to use a BIG wine when heating over the stove – you’ll burn some alcohol and it could damage a lighter varietal or styled wine. Got it? 👍🏼

We’ve added Bittermilk mix to ours for an added depth of flavor, and a splash of fresh apple cider for a refreshing finish to this cold weather classic. Depending on your preferred level of sweetness, add or subtract a tablespoon of honey, and for another layer of flavor, add a few dashes of cinnamon or other spices.

Add all ingredients into a large pot and stir until the honey is well incorporated. Heat the mixture and bring to a gentle simmer (don’t let it come to a boil!). Let it rest for about 20 minutes or until it reaches a tea-drinking temperature. Serve directly from the pot or a heat-friendly container.

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Meet the Maker: Metric Coffee Co.

But first, coffee let’s Meet the Maker.

Responsible for probably 90% of our daily productivity (☕️☕️☕️), Xavier Alexander is the co-founder of Chicago’s own Metric Coffee Co., and mastermind behind the beans brewed by yours truly. From humble beginnings (think empty garage with no money) to a full production warehouse space and a whirlwind of growth in the four years between, the quality that exudes from their coffee is a testament to the Metric team’s passion and resilience. Watch on to learn more about their roots and the antique coffee roaster that started it all, and stop by any of our cafes to taste the magic for yourself!



Giving Thanks for Wine: Ten Bottles to Kick Off Your Holiday Entertaining

Time to gather ‘round the table and kick off the holiday entertaining season! First things first – that Thanksgiving feast (and Friendsgiving warmups). All those dishes can pair with a large variety of wines, so we turned to our beverage director (‘sup Dylan) for his top picks and pairings – after all, you should be spending your time with friends and fam eating ALL the food, not stuck in the wine aisle. Check ‘em out below, and when in doubt, always order up a couple extra bottles!

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Gruet, Rosé Brut

I love to start every meal with a toast of bubbles to awake the palate! A good dry sparkling rosé like this one reminds me of tart cranberry sauce and toasty stuffing. Not to mention, bubbles always make for a great party starter.

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Brea, Chardonnay & Rough Day Chardonnay

These unaged or lightly oaked Chardonnays are a perfect match for Thanksgiving foods. They have just enough richness, but typically retain enough acidity to cut through some of the fattier dishes.

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August Kesseler, Riesling R

We simply don’t deserve this pairing. Produced by one of the most prolific winemakers in Germany, this versatile Riesling pairs well with fatty dark meat as well as a nice dry cranberry sauce.

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Margerum Wine Co. Sauvignon Blanc

A definite crowd pleaser. Look to pair this one with some apps and your lighter dishes.

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Gönc, Pinot Grigio Rosato

During the heart of the meal, you’ll usually dive into your whites and reds, but we’d suggest giving this rosato (think rosé) pinot grigio a try. With just enough richness and acidity to go with nearly any Thanksgiving dish, it tops the list as one of my personal favorites!

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GC Cellars Pinot Noir Commuter & Lulumi Pinot Noir

Med-light bodied Pinot Noir is a go-to for Thanksgiving. Turkey is considered a mild poultry, but usually has enough herbs and richness that red wines like Pinot Noir can match perfectly (whether you go white or dark meat). August Kesseler’s The Daily August Pinot Noir is another great pick, and you can purchase all three together in a bundle!

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Domain Saint Cyr, Beaujolais la Galoche Gamay

Earthy and light with flavors of bright red fruits; Gamay paired with turkey covered in cranberry sauce really gets those salivary glands going!

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We know what you’re thinking. “Wait, this Thanksgiving pairing suggestion doesn’t include Beaujolais Nouveau!!”

Beaujolais Nouveau, though a French tradition, has morphed into the standard pairing for Thanksgiving dinner – and for very good reason. It exemplifies the light bodied, fruity, acidic red wine that’s perfect for your Thanksgiving spread. By law, these wines aren’t released until mid-November, but don’t you worry – we’ve got all your Nouveau cravings met. Stay tuned.

Meet the Maker: Pipeworks Brewing Co.

For our second edition of Meet the Maker, let’s have a drink with one of Chicago’s largest self-distributing craft beer companies – Pipeworks Brewing Co! Whether you’re a local beer hound or a casual drinker, it’s hard to deny the influence their unique and spirited approach has made on the beer community, with staples like Ninja vs Unicorn among a bevy of small batch, highly sought after one-and-done brews.

For more on everything from their Kickstarter roots to their creative process to plans for an upcoming brewpub, we met up with ‘the barrel guy,’ Mike Schallau, to get the scoop and a glimpse behind the scenes at their brewery. And pro tip: be sure to scroll to the end for a bonus mini meet of the Pdubs cats!

BONUS feature: Meet the Meows!

From the Orchard: Our Go-To Apple Cider Cocktails

The leaves are changing, the temps are falling, and it’s time to swap that rosé for something a little stronger! Pair your weekend pumpkin patch and apple picking outings with our go-to cider cocktails for the season – with just a few ingredients each, these quick and easy recipes will warm you right up on those crisp fall nights.

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Rum Cider Slush

  • 1 1/2 oz Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum
  • 1 oz Simple Syrup
  • 5 oz Apple Cider
  • Lemon wheel to garnish

Because slushes should be a thing all year long – swap out those tropical Piña Coladas for something more seasonal with this rum slush + a generous splash of fresh apple cider. Pro tip: Hosting a pumpkin patch/apple picking outing? This is a great drink to scale up and make for a large group or party!

Mix all ingredients into blender. Cover with handful of ice and blend until smooth. Garnish with lemon wheel.

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Apple Cider Mule

  • 1 1/2 oz Jim Beam Kentucky Straight Bourbon
  • 1/2 oz Simple Syrup
  • 1/4 oz Lemon Juice
  • 1 1/2 oz Apple Cider
  • 2 1/2 oz Fever Tree Ginger Beer
  • Lime wheel to garnish

The Kentucky Mule meets fall. Cider adds a layer of richness and complexity to take the classic mule to the next level.

Combine all ingredients in serving glass and top with crushed ice. Garnish with lime wheel.

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Warm Whiskey Cider

  • 1 1/2 oz Leopold Bros. Apple Whiskey
  • 1/2 oz Simple Syrup
  • 5 oz Apple Cider (warmed)

When it goes from 80 degrees to freeze advisories with no warning…you’re gonna need an easy way to turn the temps up on your drinks, too. We refuse to go full on hot toddy quite yet (wait your turn, winter) – but this warmed whiskey cider is just the thing for those fall nights.

Heat apple cider in a teapot or saucepan until warm. In your cocktail glass, combine 1 1/2 oz of Leopold Bros. Apple Whiskey and 1/2 oz simple syrup, then top with about 5 oz of warm apple cider. (Whipped cream optional.)

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Introducing: Our Southport Cafe Menu

When you find out Southport has the eeeeeats 🤩 – from killer breakfast biscuit sammies to cheeseburgers to Nutella french toast, Chef Brad’s lineup of classic cafe favorites (‘sup Avo Toast) plus our own Foxtrot staples will be your new go-to for a 👌🏼 bite, whether you’re enjoying it in our lounge or on the go. Swing by the next time you’re in the neighborhood! We’re at 3334 N Southport Ave at the corner of Southport and Henderson, just south of the Brown Line stop.

Now let’s meet the eats (and a few drinks, because cocktaillllls) – pop to the end if you’re just here to see a copy of the full cafe menu, but we’d recommend taking a leisurely scroll down for the 📸 👀

pitaya, strawberries, pineapple, banana, chia seeds, granola and coconut

grapefruit, feta cheese, radish, pepitas and fresh mint on toasted sourdough

choice of bagel and house made cream cheese, smoked salmon, tomato, cucumber, onion and caper salad

baked sourdough, nutella and maple syrup topped with whipped cream

served with a béchamel sauce on a house made biscuit

acorn and butternut squash, broccolini, monterey jack and oaxaca cheese served with a baby kale salad

certified black angus beef, american cheese, dijonnaise and a b&b pickle served on a brioche bun

farro, acorn and butternut squash, poblano, avocado pesto, grapes, baby kale, pepitas and parmesan cheese

served with b&b pickles on a house made biscuit

olive focaccia, pepita spread and roasted fruit served with a baby kale salad

tahini-sesame aioli, fried garlic and shallots, black sesame seeds

old fashioned doughnut, roasted apples and vanilla ice cream with apple cider caramel and whipped cream

Plus, food for the kids:

monterey jack and cotija cheese in a flour tortilla

panko chicken served with carrot & celery sticks

tomato focaccia topped with mozzarella cheese served with a marinara dipping sauce

And don’t forget the seasonal cocktails!

Bloody Mary, Kentucky Apple Mule and a spiked PSL.

Summer’s Last Spritzes

From mimosas to Bellinis to the Aperol spritz, we’re big fans of the fizz in our drinks. Refreshing, effervescent and a breeze to make, take a departure from your usual mimosa this weekend for these sparkling wine cocktails perfect for the transition to fall!

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Baby Cheeks

  • 1 oz CH Vodka
  • ¾ oz Simple Syrup
  • ¾ oz Lime Juice
  • Strawberries
  • Gouguenheim Sparkling Rosé

Strawberries and sparkling rosé. Name a better duo…we’ll wait. Perfect for rosé and cosmo drinkers alike, plus the rest of us who aren’t willing to give up those summer vibes just yet.

Dice 5-6 strawberries and combine in 4 oz of simple syrup. Smash the strawberries with the back of a spoon and let them rest in the syrup until liquid begins to take on color and flavor of strawberries (~30min). After the flavor has been extracted into the syrup, strain the remaining strawberries from the newly flavored syrup (only ¾ oz). Juice one lime and set aside until you’re ready to compose the cocktail. Combine all ingredients in your shaker. Add a few ice cubes and shake. Strain into a white wine glass or coupe. Top with about 3 oz of Gouguenheim sparkling rosé and garnish with a small strawberry.

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Creeping Vine

  • 1 oz Hendricks Gin
  • ¾ oz Lemon Juice
  • ¾ oz Simple Syrup
  • Cucumber  
  • Jean Louis Cuvée Brut

Play up the unique Hendricks botanicals with refreshing slices of crisp cucumber!

Cut 2 slices of cucumber and add to your cocktail shaker. Juice 1 lemon, and combine with gin and simple syrup into your cocktail shaker. Lightly muddle the cucumber with a wooden spoon or muddler. Add ice and shake until cold. Strain into a white wine glass or coupe. Top with about 3 oz of Jean Louis Cuvée Brut and garnish with a cucumber wheel or peel.  

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Grapefruit Aperol Spritz

  • 1 oz Aperol
  • 2 oz Grapefruit LaCroix
  • 2 oz Ca’ Furlan Prosecco
  • Orange

A simple riff on the classic Aperol Spritz, this version with grapefruit LaCroix adds balance to the Aperol and prosecco for a slightly acidic and bittersweet spritz that’s not too rich. Highly crushable.

Combine Aperol, LaCroix and prosecco into a Collins glass. Mix gently as not to disturb the carbonation. Gently add ice until covered. Express one orange twist and enjoy!

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